Jason Leffler died on Wednesday night after a crash in a 410 Sprint dirt bike accident at Bridgeport Speedway in New Jersey.
Leffler was in second place in the first heat race of the dirt bike race at the 0.625-mile when his car flipped several times on the front straightaway, according to Chris Taitt who witnessed the accident. He told USA TODAY Sports that Leffler’s car hit the wall twice and “then it was flopping all over.”
Leffler had to be extricated from the car that striked the wall around 8:30 p.m. He was then transported to Crozer-Chester Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead.
He was pronounced dead shortly after 9 p.m., New Jersey State Police said.
Immediately after Jason Leffler’s accident at the 0.625-mile, high-banked dirt oval, Bridgeport Speedway suspended racing for the rest of the night.
The 37-year-old, was a two-time winner on the NASCAR Nationwide Series and had been nicknamed “LefTurn” which was printed above the driver’s side window on his race cars.
Leffler started racing dirt car events after losing his NASCAR ride, including the 410 Sprint Car race Wednesday that was to pay $7,000 to the winner.
Although he never made it to the NASCAR Sprint Cup level, Leffler raced almost the entire 2001 season for Chip Ganassi Racing and ran 19 races in 2005 for Joe Gibbs Racing in the car now driven by Denny Hamlin, reported CBS News.
NASCAR said in a statement about Jason Leffler’s death, “NASCAR extends its thoughts, prayers and deepest sympathies to the family of Jason Leffler, who passed away earlier this evening. For more than a decade, Jason was a fierce competitor in our sport and he will be missed.”
Indianapolis Motor Speedway released a statement calling Leffler “one of the most versatile race drivers in America, showing his talent by competing in the Indianapolis 500 and the Brickyard 400 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway during his career. He also displayed the skills that would help him reach the top levels of the sport by winning four USAC national series titles while winning on tracks throughout the Midwest.”
Leffler is survived by 5-year-old son Charlie Dean.
NASCAR driver Jason Leffler killed in crash
Race car driver Jason Leffler was killed Wednesday night in a crash during a 25-lap, dirt track race at New Jersey’s Bridgeport Speedway.
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